In this episode, Dr. Nammy Patel talks about the importance of using biocompatible materials in dental work. She explains how these materials support your oral and overall health. Then, she touches on the risks of using non-biocompatible materials in dentistry.
John Maher: Hi, I am John Maher. I’m here today with Dr. Nammy Patel, founder of Green Dentistry in San Francisco, California, helping patients recognize the vital connection between dental health and whole body health and author of the bestselling books, Age With Style: Guide To A Youthful Smile and Healthy Living and Total Wellness: Understanding The Link Between Your Teeth And Your Health.
Today we’re talking about biocompatible materials in dentistry. Welcome, Dr. Nammy.
Dr. Nammy Patel: Hi, John. Thank you for having me.
What Are Biocompatible Dental Materials?
John: Sure. Dr. Nammy, what do we mean by biocompatible materials in the context of dentistry and why is that important?
Dr. Nammy: Biocompatibility basically means that it stimulates biology or it’s very normal to things that are naturally occurring in our body. And when we think about a biocompatible material, we want one that is the least toxic, also, one that is harmonious with our body and it’s going to help our body function better and more efficiently and not have any side effects or have any negative impact.
Types of Biocompatible Dental Materials
John: And what are some different types of biocompatible materials that are available for dentistry?
Dr. Nammy: There are so many biocompatible materials that are available for dentistry. There are biocompatible composites, there are biocompatible crowns, there are biocompatible implants.
And what all of these materials do is that, for example, our biocompatible crowns, they’re really wonderful. They are made with milled porcelain and they’re compacted at high pressure and temperature. They actually resist bacteria. Let me say that again. They actually resist bacteria and they are as strong as your natural chew structure. So they are super biocompatible. They actually last a long time. They’re inert in the body, which means that they don’t cause any sort of negative reactions.
The best part about resisting bacteria is really huge because we know all of inflammation is bacteria in our immune system responding to something. So if we can have a product or something in the mouth that naturally resists bacteria, we’ve hit the gold mine. Being able to have something that is natural and healthy that we can have for our lifetime is really wonderful.
Holistic Dentistry and Biocompatibility
John: Talk a little bit about how biocompatible materials align with the principles of holistic dentistry.
Dr. Nammy: Holistic dentistry is really whole body health. And like I said earlier just a couple seconds ago, about all of life is really inflammation and all of health is inflammation. Our goal is to lower the amount of inflammation that occurs in the body and allow healing to happen as quickly as possible.
Now, we can do that in a number of ways. Number one is to decrease the amount of bacterial buildup that exists in the body, right? There are certain bacteria that we’re going to have. There’s good bacteria and bad bacteria. We want the good bacteria to be there because they actually help us. We just want the bad stuff to grow.
Now the bad stuff grows when there’s materials that are not so healthy. For example, if there’s mercury fillings which are non biocompatible, they tend to really get patients to have fungal infections because that metal keeps that fungus, it feeds on it, and it’s not something we want in our mouth.
And when we have the porcelain crowns, like I talked about earlier, they’re really great because they actually help resist bacteria and they don’t cause anything to overgrow in the body. And they really help your overall body by lowering the amount of inflammation, number one.
Number two in the mouth, you have a material that’s just like your natural tooth structure as if you never had a crown done, which is pretty darn fantastic and they last a very long time, which is really wonderful. So it avoids a cycle of the drill and fill. And that’s what we really are seeking here is things that are going to help lower inflammation. They’re going to help for a long time. They’re going to help you chew better, be comfortable, and look good and feel good.
How Biocompatible Materials Support Overall Health
John: And so how does the use of biocompatible materials improve overall health compared to non-biocompatible materials? Is it mostly that they reduce bad bacteria and that sort of thing?
Dr. Nammy: Well, non-biocompatible materials do several things. They cause inflammation. They can also cause cancer. They can also cause heart attacks. They can also cause a lot of different things. You may have heard of root canals being an issue.
A lot of times root canals are an issue because they’re filled with non- biocompatible materials or not cleaned with biocompatible materials. When that occurs, there’s chances of breast cancer, there’s chances of decreased immunity, there’s chances of hormonal dysfunction. There’s a lot of people with kidney and liver diseases. So many different things that can occur with non-biocompatible material. When we say non-biocompatible, we actually really mean toxic materials.
Contact Us Today and Protect Your Oral Health
John: All right, that’s really great information, Dr. Nammy. Thanks again for speaking with me today.
Dr. Nammy: My pleasure.
John: And for more information about Green Dentistry, visit the website at sfgreendentist.com or call 415-433-0119.